2019 Austin MotoGP Preview
It’s nearly impossible to say Circuit of the Americas and MotoGP in the same sentence without mentioning Marc Marquez.
Since the Formula One circuit in Austin, Texas, joined the MotoGP Championship in 2013, the Repsol Honda RC213V pilot has been the Lone Star. Marquez had claimed all six wins from pole.
The Spaniard had not just dominated in Austin – he won every MotoGP round he raced on American soil, including three wins at Laguna Seca and one at Indianapolis. To add to those stats of winning all 10 MotoGPs he raced in America, he also claimed pole at nine of those.
Marquez, who has earned 45 MotoGP victories since joining the premier class in 2013, enters this year’s Grand Prix of the Americas in Austin with the points lead. He won two weeks ago at Termas de Rio Hondo in Argentina, and finished second behind winner Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) at the season opener in Qatar.
Since the Argentinian GP, Marquez spent some downtime in Brazil and the US, and now is ready to remain the number-one MotoGP rider in Austin.
“We only had a short time to relax between races but I am ready to go again,” says Marc Marquez. “COTA is one of my favorite tracks; these counter-clockwise circuits always seem to suit my style the best. Although we have achieved a lot of success here in the past, we will work as we always do from Free Practice 1 and remain focused. Every year when you go to a track there are new things to understand and adapt to.”
Last season at COTA Marquez finished nearly four seconds ahead of Monster Energy Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales. Claiming the final podium position was Team Ecstar Suzuki’s Andrea Iannone.
Vinales will surely be a threat, along with his teammate Valentino Rossi, who finished second in Argentina. This is just one of four circuits where Rossi has not won – the others include Motorland Aragon in Spain, Red Bull Ring in Austria, and Buriram International Circuit in Thailand.
Dovizioso will be the main threat, though, as he has the Qatar victory and third-place finish in Argentina under his leathers. He finished on the podium twice in Austin – third in 2014 and second in 2015. Last season he was the highest-placed Ducati Desmosedici with fifth.
As for Marquez’s new teammate Jorge Lorenzo, the five-time World Champion has struggled so far in 2019 MotoGP, claiming a best of 13th in Qatar.
The action begins with free practice Friday at 10:55 a.m. EST. For television times, visit 2019 MotoGP USA TV Schedule.
2019 MotoGP Point Standings (after two of 19 rounds)